Pros and cons of living with friends


Faculty: Science and Engineering
School: Vision and Hearing Sciences
Course: BOptom (Hons) Optometry
Category: Vision and hearing sciences

4 March 2019

Your first year at university is nearly over and you can start thinking about who you live with next year. It sounds exciting that you can live with your friends or course mates - but are there pros AND cons?

Living with someone you know is not always as straightforward as you think, as we all have different living styles and habits. Here are some things to consider before you make the final decision.


  1. Cook and enjoy meals together
    Cooking alongside a friend can be a profound experience. You guys can share the cooking experience and enjoy the food together: share the process and outcome with someone you love :p
  2. Face daily challenges together
    When something happens, at least you have someone to overreact with ;-)
  3. They will be there when you need them
    Living in the same house gives you an opportunity to experience and share each moment together. No matter if it's a good moment or a bad moment, your friends will be here for you, to listen to your stories. They will be the ones to keep you company and encourage you.


  1. Money matters can cause arguments
    And these arguments can ruin your friendships.
  2. Cleaning…
    You could be surprised when they are not as hygienic as you thought they were. Everyone’s standard is different and you might not find theirs acceptable.


  1. Discuss moving in together
    Discuss thoroughly your ideas, opinions and expectations with each other. Take time to sit down and make an agreement. Things to consider include rent, house rules, splitting bills, assignment of rooms, guests are allowed or not, etc.
  2. Search and view the property together
    Once you make an agreement, you may need to start looking for potential properties and contacting agencies/landlords. It can take a longer but it's worth spending time to find a suitable place. Then, view the house together and make sure you all like it before signing the contract.
  3. Stay clean
    Encourage each other to clean up after your own mess. If it doesn’t work, talk about a couple of unsanitary things and give them a hint. If it doesn't bother you too much, clean up. However, don't let anyone start taking advantage of you as it can become a habit which will be unfair to you. If it doesn’t go too well, you may need to sit down and talk to a housemate without hurting their feelings.
  4. Respect each other
    Not only respect your housemates but also their personal belongings, space, lifestyle and habits. Even though they are your friends, don't go through their stuff without asking. Also, dietary habits can be connected to someone’s personal beliefs or health conditions. You guys are sharing a space together, you will need to compromise on some things.



The views expressed here are those of the individual and do not necessarily represent the views of Anglia Ruskin University. If you've got any concerns please contact us.